7 Ways Contractors Can Make Their Employees More Productive

Contractors Can Make Their Employees More Productive
Every contractor wants to increase productivity. When workers produce more, projects get completed faster, costs are lower, and your firm can submit more competitive bids in the future. Improving productivity requires a multi-faceted approach. Whether you have a large construction company or you’re a small local contractor, productivity is affected by everything from project planning to in-house communication. This means you need to tackle both macro and micro issues if you want your team to be more productive. Here are seven things you need to look at.

Plan Projects Adequately

You have to put plans in place to ensure workers’ productivity on an any given project well before you break ground. The project must be planned in such a way that you make the most of each individual’s time. This includes how you allocate manpower and plan for weather, equipment problems, and delivery delays. You need to ensure there are sufficient materials and tools on site with which your employees can work. Similarly, you need to schedule preventative maintenance of your equipment to ensure it is in the best condition before work begins. You can’t plan for every eventuality, but you can prepare for the challenges which you’ve encountered on previous jobs.

Bring New Technology On Board

Adopting new technology is one of the fastest ways to increase productivity. The return on investment can be significant as long as you choose the right technology for your operation. Many contractors find software for productivity, product management, and information modeling to be essential in reducing delays and reworks.

FieldPulse offers an all-in-one software package which includes CRM, invoicing, time tracking and job scheduling. It even allows you to plot your jobs on a map so you can assign personnel based on location. Meanwhile, PlanGrid’s construction productivity software allows everyone on the team to work together in real time on requests for information, drawings, markups, photos and more. BuildingConnected is a useful app for general contractors since it makes it easy to find subcontractors, send bid invitations, and manage all the communication.

Offer Employee Training

It is very important that your work crew is properly trained. This not only increases productivity, but it also ensures your workers are safe. As you know, construction sites can be quite dangerous. When workers are adequately trained in safety practices, they have less downtime resulting from injuries. However, training needs to go beyond learning how to operate equipment and follow safety regulations.

Workers should also be made aware of how their productivity affects the entire company. Explain how increases in productivity lead to fewer problems and more profits. This helps to ensure greater buy-in when you implement measures aimed at getting more out of the team. Training should also be provided for supervisors since they have a significant impact on every job.

Look At Your Incentives Package

Some workers are internally motivated and knowing they did a good job gives them personal satisfaction. Others would prefer that their employers give them a financial bonus while others want time off or a plaque or certificate. Find out what will motivate your workers and offer them incentives for completing projects earlier than expected or finishing jobs with no errors. Even simple things like pizza can help your workers feel appreciated and eager to give of their best.

Communicate Better And Listen More

Improving productivity isn’t only the responsibility of the contractor and your workers have ideas about how the entire team can improve. Talk to them about the importance of productivity and then ask them to make suggestions about how you can work together to increase productivity. When they respond, make sure you listen closely, take note of their comments and explore their feasibility. You may not be able to give you workers everything they want but make sure you listen and work to find an acceptable solution.

To improve communication generally, you can use productivity software. If every member of the team can ask questions and get responses quickly and log problems in the system immediately, you’ll have much better control over your projects. Costly misunderstandings and errors are less likely.

Set Manageable Targets

Projects take time to be completed so you need to set realistic goals. Set targets for each day, week, and month and make sure every member of the crew understands what needs to be done. Setting small goals makes the project seem more manageable and workers won’t get overwhelmed by all that needs to be done. When teams rush to meet unreasonable deadlines, the work is usually sloppy and correcting the problems leads to project delays and cost overruns.

Keep A Close Eye On Your Materials

Productivity takes a big hit when crew members are trying to complete a job but there are not enough construction materials to work with. You need to keep track of your inventory on a consistent basis to ensure you have what you need for at least the next week. If your supply is running low, you need to put in your order as early as possible to avoid disrupting the project.

Final Thoughts

Planning is at the core of improved productivity among workers. Before you get started on a project, you need to come up with a strategy for ensuring every member of the team does their best. You need to set manageable goals, incentivize your workers, and ensure they understand the company’s end goals. When people know exactly what they’re working towards, they are more likely to stay committed to the task and go above and beyond. Show them how they’re helping both the firm and the community, and they’ll be more likely to take the initiative.

However, improving productivity isn’t just about motivating workers. While your employees need to feel valued, productivity rates also depend on the systems you put in place and the technology you deploy. If you’ve been shunning modern solutions, you’re shooting yourself in the foot. Implement all the suggestions above and watch your productivity rate rise over time.

AUTHOR_NAMEAbout the Author:
Marie Erhart is a Success Manager at FieldPulse, creators of field service software that lets you run your entire contracting business from a single app. She works with contractors to help them grow their business using best practices.
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